Chapter 4: Session 3: The Carroburg Conundrum
Cast: Archibald, Dellin, Cedric, Bronan
Followers: Josef Krunk
Archibald leads the charge to the watch towers, where his vision (and Ranthin’s) indicated doom was approaching. Ranthin, his follower Hans Bauman, and his friend Johann Schmidt, decide on the better part of valor. They elect not to follow Archibald, but to instead head straight to a river boat and “scout out the path downstream.”
At the towers, a clan of ogres and a very angry little girl march on Carroburg out of the surrounding forest. They stop just inside the treeline of the clearing around the town, about 50 yards away from the meager fortifications. The ogres are about 8’ tall and 600 lbs, they wear light armor, and wield giant cleaver-like swords. The clan numbers around 50 male and female ogres, all equally intimidating and repulsive. The ogre clan leader speaks Reikspiel, and accuses the townies of “being da midgets wot done stole our liquor.” Dellin has many insights into this clan of ogres (rolled 01 on monster lore), including knowing their specific clan (“Obdron”), that they typically live on the northern reaches of Norsca, kill polar bears and walruses for food and hides, have a liking for gold and booze, create their own fermented-whale-and-seal-blubber alcohol, and while barbaric, they are not stupid, and they follow a code of conduct when making war. Archibald notices with his keen vision that the ogres appear to have runic marks on their foreheads drawn in ashes, perhaps.
As the girl yells at her ogre companions to attack immediately (which seems to be in violation of some strange ogre code of conduct), Dellin’s acute hearing picks up that this girl blames Archibald (the evil priest) and the rest for abandoning her “behind the doors” of the evil doktor’s lair — of leaving her and other children to be tortured, while they rode off to attend other business, even though she was screaming and pleading for help. If it weren’t for “lady Renee,” she would never have been freed. Cedric tries to yell across the clearing to the strange girl, to convince her out of attacking. Instead he gets possessed by the girl’s magic until Bronan slaps him around a bit.
The townsfolk and the party members decide to flee after an uncanny earthquake hits the town, the towers and rampart defenses are destroyed by magical force, and the ogres start charging in. A bronze knight is spotted on a far hilltop to the South, watching the events unfold. Victor Von Hume and a couple dozen remaining guardsmen, lead by Captain Schiller, are spotted retreating through the forest, near the shoreline, to the north of town. Most of the townies get out alive on river barges and fishing vessels. Cedric tries to rally their spirits by visiting each refugee-packed barge over the next two days of river travel, and recounting heroic deeds. On one occasion, he manages to horrify all the refugees with an unintended message of the deepest despair (crit failure, 00), and they all jump off the boat to get as far away from the cursed story-teller as possible…so Cedric stops trying to make people feel better.
The characters take their barge downstream to Marionburg. They are stopped short of Marionburg by a river blockade enforced by the imperial army. They talk with Col. Seigfried von Kroft, who is in charge of special forces and covert operations. They are sent on a mission with seven of von Kroft’s men, and a “pigeon-guy,” to rescue Mix Riggins from de Rochelle, and use him in turn to figure out how to rescue the Emperor.
The characters take a ferry in the dark of night to sneak across to the Brettonian side of the river. They run into a rear guard of archers. They win the battle, but one of von Kroft’s scouts is slain in the combat. They unload their pack horses and supplies from the river ferry, and sneak off into the woods to begin their journey behind enemy lines.
Characters receive 100xp each.